When there’s talk about the Internet, there’s always talk about e-commerce. E-commerce, or electronic commerce, is any type of transaction (products or services) that’s been carried out through the Internet.
Online businesses such as Amazon or Netflix are the perfect examples of e-commerce businesses. They provide products or services to their customers, solely through online purchases and transactions.
E-commerce is a powerful industry in the digital age and is expected to cross over 6.5 billion dollars in sales by 2023.
When it comes to e-commerce marketing, businesses across market models (B2B, SaaS, B2C, etc.) have noticed the growing need for intensive digital marketing to promote their goods and services to a larger audience, through e-commerce marketing.
This blog will outline the need for greater investment in e-commerce marketing initiatives, steps to work towards better investment, and some of the best e-commerce marketing tools available for professionals and businesses.
What is E-commerce Marketing?
Put simply, e-commerce marketing involves promoting and publicizing a brand’s products/services through various online channels. Creating brand awareness, sharing valuable content online, and advertising an online store’s products are just a few examples of what e-commerce marketing is all about.
Online businesses can drive an enormous amount of traffic through these marketing tactics, and can often expect a higher rate of customer retention.
E-commerce marketers aim for the following goals:
- Increase awareness about an online business’s services and products
- Attract a larger audience through advertising and brand promotions
- Drive more user traffic through online mediums (such as social media) to the business’s website or landing page
- Working on more customer acquisition while retaining existing customers
What Are the Types of E-commerce Marketing?
Here’s a quick list of some of the most popular (and effective) marketing tactics e-commerce businesses can use to achieve their business goals in 2022.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Pay per click advertising (PPC)
- Social Media Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Content Marketing
P.S. – Read the “How to Invest in E-commerce Marketing in 2022” section of this blog to know more.
Now let’s look into some…
While crafting e-commerce marketing strategies, here are two terms every marketer should know.
KPI – Key Performance Indicators
KPIs are a way to measure performance over time, using quantifiable metrics. Good examples of e-commerce KPIs include conversion rate and average order value (AOV).
KPIs help align your marketing efforts with business goals, as well as set up goals for set periods. Setting up KPIs helps you keep better track of your marketing strategy, as well as make required changes in your tactics from time to time.
ROI – Return of Investment
Here’s a simple definition – once you invest, you expect returns. Measuring these returns through a parameter known as ROI is the best way to keep a close eye on your marketing efforts and understand the relationship between your investments and returns. Tracking the profitability of your e-commerce marketing strategies can be done by measuring:
- Customer acquisition
- Customer churn rate
- Performance of the brand website on SERPs
- Engagement across various online platforms
Why Invest in E-commerce Marketing?
Recent Boom in E-commerce
It’s no surprise that the pandemic led to a boom in the e-commerce industry. The increase in the number of social media users provided a high-traffic marketing channel for small businesses and local outfits.
Large e-commerce stores have been working on greater brand visibility and reach, attracting a large number of e-shoppers across the globe.
E-commerce is expected to capture an enormous amount of market share in the coming year – almost 7 billion dollars, to be exact.
Investing in relevant marketing channels like SEO, PPC, email marketing, and social media marketing can give your brand the boost it needs in 2022. However, market research, setting up clear business goals, and identifying potent marketing channels is essential before investment.
Tip: While drafting a business case for investment in e-commerce marketing, make sure to calculate ROIs and performance predictors from organic, paid, as well as referral-based channels.
Boosts Brand Image
Building a credible (and popular) brand image is key to online success. B2C giants like Amazon have created a popular, trusted, and profitable brand image over the Internet, all thanks to their marketing efforts online.
Even small businesses, such as local thrift stores, have taken to online marketing channels to boost brand awareness and audience engagement.
Focusing on social media marketing and other channels such as PPC and SEO can help you boost brand image, and consequently, boost user traffic and engagement.
Offers Insights on Buyer Behaviour
The secret to brand success is knowing what your customers want. E-commerce businesses, specifically, rely on creating products and services that satisfy their target audience’s needs.
Marketing your brand’s products and services online also involves interacting with customers, both acquitted and retained. Brand interactions help identify customer needs more closely, address queries and issues, and positively impact UX.
The better you know your target audience and what they want, the more edge you’ll have over your competitors, especially in the e-commerce space, which leads us to our next point.
Gives You an Edge Over Competitors
While e-commerce is becoming extremely popular amongst shoppers and businesses alike, the amount of competition in the e-commerce/e-retail space is staggering.
Not having an online presence can break your e-commerce business’s shot at success. On the other hand, many businesses have a brand website but have not invested in long-term marketing strategies. Be it organic search on social media or paid ads on search engines, good or bad (or no) marketing is what sets one business apart from another.
Investing in marketing efforts across online channels helps gain more awareness, quality traffic in your sales funnel, and equally greater revenue for your brand.
How to Invest in E-commerce Marketing
By now, you know just how important e-commerce marketing is for your business, no matter how big or small it is.
Now questions arise: “How do I invest correctly in e-commerce marketing?”, “Which channels are the best for my e-commerce business?”, and “For how long should I invest in these marketing channels?”.
Here are a few effective and widely-used channels for e-commerce marketing, which can give your brand its next big break.
Social Media Marketing
Everyone’s on social media. And by everyone, we mean absolutely everyone. From e-commerce giants such as Amazon to a 16-year-old on the other side of the planet.
Over 73% of marketers believe social media to be one of the most effective channels for their marketing efforts – that’s 7 out of every ten marketers. Social media channels such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Pinterest hold an enormous amount of potential for e-commerce brands, due to the billions (3.78 billion, to be exact) of users on these channels.
Here’s how you can craft a masterful social media strategy for brand success in 2022:
- Work with different content types – Reels, photos, GIFs, infographics
- Deliver valuable, insightful content to your target audience – the more value you add through your marketing efforts, the more they are likely to choose your brand’s products/services over a competitor’s.
- Keep a close eye on post-performance and user metrics – views, engagement, and lead generation can give you insights into the tweaks and modifications your strategy may need.
Marketers swear by it, and the people love it. You may think email marketing is an obsolete marketing channel based on average open rates, but they hold more potential than you think.
When it comes to ROI, emails are a goldmine. Research shows that for every 1 dollar spent on emails, brands see a return of 42 dollars. That’s an ROI of 4,200%, showing just how effective emails are. An added bonus? Your email marketing efforts can be completely automated, which means you save lots of time and effort, especially if you’re a small business.
Here’s another one. Customer retention is a smooth and seamless process, as regular email updates in the form of newsletters, brand updates, sales, and event updates help decrease the churn rate and increase customer retention.
Content marketing is a technique used by almost every e-commerce brand. Content marketing involves providing valuable content and information to your target audience, helping them be better informed while opting for a product or service.
The better content you provide, the likelier they are to op for yours. Social media posts, blogs on your website, and email newsletters about industry updates, How-To’s, short guides, and FAQs are all part of content marketing.
In the coming year, a greater emphasis will be made on the value marketing efforts carry.
Tip: Audiences look for value to help them make the right choice, and not aggressive promotion.
Organic efforts, as cost-effective and viable they may be, need to be complemented with paid ads on online mediums. Paid ads on search engines and social media channels are extremely effective tools to drive traffic, boost customer acquisition, and establish brand awareness and visibility on SERPs and social media platforms.
Investing in paid ads and promotions can give your e-commerce business the push it needs for short-term campaigns, visibility efforts, and positively impacts traffic generation through various channels.
The next big thing for e-commerce brands after paid ads? Influencer marketing. Influencer marketing involves brands reaching out to micro and macro-influencers to help promote and advertise their products/services.
Influencers, as the name suggests, influence an enormous segment of social media users. Depending on your business’s need, reaching out to hyper-local or niche-specific influencers for targeted promotion is the best way to capture audience attention and boost brand awareness.
Your e-commerce business can benefit greatly from all these channels in the coming year, keeping in mind the following points.
- Set both short-term and long-term marketing goals, and target the right channels for these
- Closely tracking brand performance across these channels gives you the insights you need to tweak and/or add to your current marketing strategy.
Top E-Commerce Marketing Tools
It’s 2022, and there’s a tool for everything. Below are some of the best tools for e-commerce marketing that help save a load of time and effort, along with helping scale up your marketing efforts for e-commerce and e-retail businesses.
Used by over Databox, Google Analytics is one of the best, most streamlined tools for progress tracking via analytics. With real-time reports on various aspects of site performance and user metrics, Google Analytics is the go-to tool for every marketer. Here are a few metrics you can track via Google analytics.
- User demographics
- Which pages of your website gained the most user traffic
- Which channel directed the most number of users to your website (paid ads, social media, referral)
- Bids per paid ad (for relevant keywords)
- Best-performing channels
- Google Analytics Dashboard via Databox
Kissmetrics is cloud-based automation software that helps you with email campaigns and customer engagement. For small businesses and firms, this platform is the best place to automate email campaigns, track performance, and gather insights on consumer engagement. It helps you track, analyze, and segregate your audience for better categorization of marketing efforts according to geographical zone, age, buyer preferences, etc.
It also helps track website performance and acquisition data across channels, giving you a clear idea of which channels are best-performing, and which drive the least traffic.
Where there’s graphics, there’s Canva. Canva is one of the most popular graphic designing tools available and is widely loved by designers, customers, and brands alike. And rightly so. With its enormous template gallery, design tools, and active community, Canva is a complete winner for all sorts of video creation and graphic designing.
A preview of the Canva dashboard via Canva
When it comes to automating your marketing efforts, Omnisend helps automate everything from push notifications, emails, text messages on various messaging platforms, as well as integration with Facebook and Google ads. Omnisend works well for both large and small e-commerce businesses and helps greatly with both customer retention and acquisition.
Email marketing greatly benefits from email automation software, and Mailchimp is at the very top of the list. Preferred mainly by small businesses, Mailchimp is affordable, fast, and efficient.
Mailchimp’s designing and automation software comes packed with powerful analytics tools that can help you monitor your performance across campaigns, audiences, and channels effectively. Talk about smart!
The Mailchimp dashboard, via Mailchimp
E-commerce businesses stand to gain quite a lot in 2022, be it through a much larger audience, or effective marketing tools. Using the right online marketing channels, the right software, and the right content is the best way to drive greater engagement, boost sales, and above all, leave your audience hooked.